Saturday, 20 June 2015

21 Libertarian Propositions about the World and Individuation

1. There is an underlying reality whose true nature we cannot know.

2. We construct our world through more or less effective manipulation of signs or symbols for things.

3. The most effective form of sign and symbol manipulation is science expressed as technology (the actual manipulation of matter for proven effect) but other manipulations include arts that manipulate the signs and symbols themselves and which manipulate the minds of others.

4. Technological change and individual creativity and needs have an iterative effect on the signs and symbols inherited from generation to generation of persons through tradition. All culture is thus contingent.

5. Each person is faced with a world of signs and symbols that have not been chosen by them but have been given to them. In this sense, ‘they have not chosen their parents’. This world of given signs and symbols continues to impose values on them at every moment of their existence.

6. Each person has an underlying reality of bio-physical processes for which signs and symbols are necessary in order to function in the world.

7. Each person struggles between self-generated signs and symbols on the one hand, making use of what is given, and signs and symbols given to them in the interest of others. Each calibrates himself or herself between the two in order to function in the world.

8. Individuation is right calibration but the signs and symbols of the world are dysfunctional in this context to the degree that they are not ordered either in relation to scientific principles or not calibrated with the biological reality of the person as a mind embedded in a body and a history.

9. Signs and symbols may be very functional for society in the aggregate yet be dysfunctional in relation to nature or the individual – it is a political act to demand that signs and symbol manipulation accord with discovered nature and with individual aspiration or need.

10. A poorly calibrated society is one in which signs and symbols are not calibrated with technological and natural phenomena (i.e. are revealed or traditional religion) or with the signs and symbols of choice of free persons (i.e. are totalitarian or ideological).

11. The signs and symbols of the person are dysfunctional to the degree that they are not in alignment with the needs of the biological person in its form of consciousness at any one time.

12. In order for individuation to take place, the biological person needs to create signs and symbols that express its own reality but which are still in accord with the technological and natural reality of the world in which it inhabits.

13. A poorly calibrated person is one who either accepts the signs and symbols of a society without calibrating these with his own ‘true nature’ (‘repression’) or one whose personal signs and symbols are disconnected from natural or technological reality (’madness’).

14. A person who does not accept the signs and symbols of society but is in accord with natural or technological reality is not mad – society is mad under such conditions.

15. A society is repressive if it accords with natural or technological reality yet refuses to accept the right of persons to calibrate their own signs and symbols within that reality.

16. There is nothing universal in the process of calibration. Society is contingent and persons are contingent in space and time. Finding the universal as sign or symbol for individuation is a contradiction in terms, an abnegation and a determination by the individual to choose signs and symbols that are disconnected from underlying material realities.

17. This is not to say that there is nothing that is not ‘universal’ but whatever is universal and is not scientific is beyond the human and is unknowable - to claim to know is to promote an illusion.

18. It is a presumption to think that any mind can escape a world of contingent signs and symbols. A temporary but possibly transformative discovery of one’s own reality (but not that of the universe) is the most that transcendent strategies can achieve – such strategies may tell you nothing about the universe but a great deal about yourself.

19. All persons are equal in their right to their own construction of signs and symbols even if some are more able to do so than others. All societies are oppressive to the degree that they dictate the acceptance of signs and symbols that are not scientific facts of matter. Religion and culture are not facts of matter. They cannot be rightfully dictated.

20. The greater the number of signs and symbols in a society, the greater the choice for individuals and the more language there is available for individuation. Individuation can only take place in a free society in which religion and culture are tools for (and not the masters of) individuals.

21. The three platforms of individuation are:

• Understanding all things as contingent and not universal
• Understanding the ultimate material base to all consciousness
• Seeing individuation as a process or calibration in relations between the given and the chosen